Cascade Duffle Coat

This is a really long post.  If you just want the nitty gritty of the pattern and modifications I made, scroll down to the bottom and I’ll have a bullet point list for you!

Cascade Duffle Coat :: Dandelion Drift

Round five of the Super Online Sewing Match is here and I’m so excited to share with you what I sewed!  This is truly the most intricate thing I have ever made, and also the sew that I am most proud of!  Here’s the Cascade Duffle Coat!  This pattern is by Jen of Grainline Studios and it is a really, really good pattern!

Cascade Duffle Coat :: Dandelion Drift

When Beth and Kristin from Sew Mama Sew emailed us the pattern for this challenge last Monday, I had a mini panic moment (maybe even a big panic moment).  I thought this was going to be way too much for me to handle.  A coat!  A real winter coat!  Yikes.

Cascade Duffle Coat :: Dandelion Drift

My family has had a family vacation planned for August 14th for some time and my goal was to finish my sewing for the Super Online Sewing Match before we left for vacation.  That translated to only three days available for me to sew the Cascade Coat.  (Hence the panic moment.)  Josh and I talked for a minute on Monday and he convinced me that this was doable and if I stayed focused I definitely could finish the coat before vacation.  I spent three whole days, I mean three days from sun up to sun down to finish the coat.  Kind friends jumped in and watched the kids for me.  Josh helped keep the house running with food and cleaning.  And the coat was all sewn and ready to be photographed by last Thursday night!

Cascade Duffle Coat :: Dandelion Drift

Ready for some details.  As soon as we had the pattern in hand I went shopping for fabric.  I drove up to Orlando knowing that there would be a few fabric store options.  The closest fabric store in Orlando was Jo Anns so that is where we headed.  And amazingly they had everything I was looking for.  I know most people would see this Duffle coat and immediately think it should be made out of wool.  Well I live in Florida and own one wool coat, which hasn’t been worn in a few years.  It rarely gets cold enough to need a winter coat here.  And we rarely travel in the winter time to cold locations!  So I looked into some other coat fabric recommendations.  Jen talks about fabric options for the Cascade Duffle Coat and mentions bottomweights and twill fabric.  Jo Ann had this great blue twill fabric that had some weight to it, and no stretch…perfect.  They also had this gray bemberg rayon that I used for the lining.  That’s really all I needed to grab.  I already owned the zippers and buttons so I was ready to sew.

Cascade Duffle Coat :: Dandelion Drift

The  coat pattern came together easily.  It took hours and hours to sew, but nothing was difficult, just time consuming.  I would equate this to running a race.  Just about anyone can run, it’s just one step at a time.  Same with this pattern.  It’s just one step of the pattern at a time.

I sewed a straight size four.  That’s where my measurements put me, and the fit is perfect!  I sewed all the steps as directed, just made a few additions.

Cascade Duffle Coat :: Dandelion Drift Cascade Duffle Coat :: Dandelion Drift

I really liked the patch pockets on the coat, but also knew that sticking my hands in a patch pocket would be a little awkward.  They are perfect pockets to put my things in, though.  I added a flap to the pocket, and I’m sure you’ll also see I made a way for me to put my hands in my pockets on the side.  I decided to add welt pockets right on the pocket placement line for the patch pockets.  This worked out perfectly.  I used this tutorial from Thread Theory to guide me through making the welt pockets.  And the welt pockets are lined in bemberg rayon, and go the distance from the pocket line, all the way over to the middle of the coat.  I tacked down the lining at each corner of the welt pocket so that the pocket bags wouldn’t bunch up.

Cascade Duffle Coat :: Dandelion Drift

I also looked through some pictures of duffle coats for inspiration and saw a picture of a coat with a great interior zipper pocket.  I added that pocket to the facing piece, two inches in from the inside seam.  I wasn’t sure where to place this zipper, so I saved that step towards the end until I could try the lining on and find the best placement.  The zipper is a nine inch zipper, and the pocket lining for this one is nani iro double gauze.  I again tacked down the corners of the pocket to ensure it wouldn’t bunch up inside the lining.

Cascade Duffle Coat :: Dandelion Drift

Cascade Duffle Coat :: Dandelion Drift

The lining for the interior zipper pocket matches the front bands for the zipper up front.  I wanted to make sure the lines matched up on the nani iro fabric on either side of the zipper.  I also saw the greatest idea from Jenny of Cashmerette to add some flat piping in the seam between the lining and the facing.  Often times my goal when sewing is to make my clothes look like something I would buy in a store.  But at the same time, it is great to add extra special details that you normally would not find.

Cascade Duffle Coat :: Dandelion Drift

Jen mentions making the toggles on the coat out of leather.  I had some brown leather on hand, but didn’t care for the contrast in colors on the front of this blue coat.  So I decided to make my toggles out of the same blue fabric as my coat.  I used the toggle pattern piece, added 1/4 inch seam allowance to the pattern piece and cut out six blue toggle pieces from the blue fabric, and six from the lining.  I sewed these pieces right sides together, left a small opening to turn these pieces right side out and flipped them.  One trick I have learned when sewing small curved pieces is to using pinking sheers to grade the seams down, instead of notching around the curve.  The cord for my toggles is some braided white cotton trim.  I made sure to stretch the cord as much as possible when measuring their placement to make sure they wouldn’t be stretched out when I buttoned it closed.  The wooden toggle buttons were stolen from a jacket I had sewed for my daughter a few years ago that she’s outgrown.

Cascade Duffle Coat :: Dandelion Drift

Here’s a couple pics of the inside of the coat.  Everything is super neat and tidy.  I was nervous when it came time to bag the coat, but Jen’s instructions and pictures from the sew along helped tremendously!  I think this is the step that made me the most nervous, just because it was something I had never done before, nor had ever even tried to wrap my brain around.  Turns out, it was not scary at all, and leaves you feeling like a sewing magician!

Cascade Duffle Coat :: Dandelion Drift Cascade Duffle Coat :: Dandelion Drift

Whelp, that’s it.  All of the coat details.  I ended up with a great coat that is not too heavy, not too warm and will definitely get worn in our mild Florida winters!  I am so excited for the weather to cool off now so I can throw on my new coat and wear it around!  I should also mention that I am so thrilled to have been able to participate in the Super Online Sewing Match.  This competition has been a great experience!

Cascade Duffle Coat :: Dandelion Drift

Okay…here’s a quick rundown for those just wanting quick details:

  • Pattern: Cascade Duffle Coat
  • Size: 4 (exactly where my measurements placed me)
  • Material: twill (with no stretch) and bemberg rayon (both from Jo Ann)
  • Toggles: self made out of exterior fabric

Pattern additions

  • welt pockets on pocket placement line
  • pocket flaps for patch pockets
  • interior zipper pocket
  • flat piping in between lining and facing

 

Cultivate City Gym Shorts

When Bonnie Christine asked if I’d be interested in sewing with some of her new line of fabric, Cultivate, I didn’t even hesitate to say yes.  I’ve sewn with one of her previous lines of fabric before (you can see the projects here with this small poolside tote and Ella top) and loved the fabric so much. Bonnie’s lines are always a little feminine and each fabric coordinates without being matchy matchy.

City Gym Shorts :: Dandelion Drift

My girl, Sweet Pea, has been growing like a weed so was in need of new shorts.  I love to sew her things that will be reached for over and over, so I decided to sew her a new pair of city gym shorts.

City Gym Shorts :: Dandelion DriftI knew right away that row by row lit fabric would make the perfect binding with the stripes. I used flower field mist fabric for the front of the shorts, brown chambray for the back, and plotted farm autumn for the waistband.

City Gym Shorts :: Dandelion Drift

I love how these shorts turned out. So much so that I started cutting out a second pair for my girl!City Gym Shorts :: Dandelion Drift

Bonnie has a great lineup of bloggers showing off their cultivate fabric creations. Take a look at what Ryan made yesterday. And I can’t wait to see what Mary will share tomorrow!

Carolyn Pajamas

Carolyn Pajamas :: Dandelion Drift

I made it through to round four of the Super Online Sewing Match and this round’s sewing pattern has been on my sewing radar for a while!  We were give the Carolyn Pajamas pattern by Heather of Closet Case Files.  These are super fancy looking pajamas, quite an upgrade from the old shorts from my college days that I have in my pajama drawer.

Carolyn Pajamas :: Dandelion Drift

Since I was sewing super fancy pajamas, I wanted to sew them in luxurious fabric.  Silk first came to mind, but was definitely out of my price range.  The next best thing was rayon.  It has great drape, is lightweight and breathable.  I had three yards of this rayon fabric from the Imagine Gnats shop sitting in my pile of fabrics, which was just the right amount for this pattern.

Carolyn Pajamas :: Dandelion Drift

Since I live in Florida, and it has been so hot recently, I couldn’t think of sewing anything other than shorts and a short sleeved shirt for my pajamas.  Heather’s pattern does come with a pants and long sleeve shirt option (which I’m sure I’ll sew in the future)!

Carolyn Pajamas :: Dandelion Drift

The pattern pieced together smoothly!  I sewed a size 6 for the top and an 8 for the bottoms (that’s where my hip and chest measurements placed me).  I was nervous to sew all of the piping with this pattern, but I dug through my sewing machine feet attachments and found my piping foot to use, which was really helpful.  These Carolyn Pajamas used two entire packages of piping (more than I’ve used in any other project)!

Carolyn Pajamas :: Dandelion Drift

I left off the breast pocket for a few reasons.  I sewed it on the top (with piping in between the upper and lower pocket pieces), and when I tried on the top, I thought it was too low.  I seam ripped the pocket, and then when I moved it up, I didn’t like that it was like a white runway sign going right across my chest.  I decided that maybe it was the high contrast of the blue fabric and the white piping causing the chest pocket to not add anything to the top!  So it stayed off, unsewn and in the trash!

Carolyn Pajamas :: Dandelion Drift Carolyn Pajamas :: Dandelion Drift

I made a couple additions to the bottoms.  I love how Kelli of True Bias finishes the waistband in her Hudson Pant pattern (with topstitching on the elastic waistband), so I added that feature to my pants.  I also added little bar tacks at the bottom of each pocket (on the side seams), you know, just in case I’m carrying anything heavy in these pajama pockets!  These pajama bottoms are truly the most comfortable pajamas I have ever worn!

Carolyn Pajamas :: Dandelion Drift Carolyn Pajamas :: Dandelion Drift

I’m particularly proud of my buttons on this top.  The last time I sewed buttons on rayon, I didn’t get the correct amount of interfacing to use and the buttonholes puckered.  These buttonholes came out perfectly.  I practiced a bit on some scrap fabric first to make sure I had the right amount of interfacing underneath the buttonholes!

Carolyn Pajamas :: Dandelion Drift

Here’s a peek at the insides.  I used french seams everywhere in this pattern.  Yep, even the shoulder / arm seam and the faux fly!  I hand stitched all of the hems (the shirt, sleeves, and shorts) and hand stitched the facing at the shoulders.

Carolyn Pajamas :: Dandelion Drift Carolyn Pajamas :: Dandelion Drift Carolyn Pajamas :: Dandelion Drift

These pajamas are definitely the nicest pajamas in my dresser!  And the fit is perfect!  There are definitely more Carolyn Pajamas in my future (especially the bottoms)!

Carolyn Pajamas :: Dandelion Drift

 

Wax Fabric Tutorial

In my last post I mentioned I had a whole lot more to say about waxing fabric, so here we are today with a little tutorial on how to make your own waxed fabric.  I looked around and found a little bit of information, which gave me a great starting point.

Here are the supplies you need:

  • beeswax (I grabbed mine here)
  • paraffin wax (I found it in the grocery store next to the canning supplies)
  • double boiler
  • paper cup
  • heat gun or blow dryer

 

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I started with equal parts paraffin wax and beeswax (and just for reference, I used 3 oz. of each).  I placed these two waxes into a double boiler (in my case, a glass bowl on top of a pot of boiling water) and slowly melted the two waxes together.  Give it a stir.

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Grab an empty paper cup.

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Pour your wax mixture into the cup and let it dry.  (You can see my wax cracked while it was drying which was no big deal at all.)

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Peel away the top layer of the cup which will then give you some wax to work with.

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This next step, I tried a few tools.  I tried a blow dryer, the outside sunshine and my embossing heat gun.  Both the blow dryer and the heat gun worked great (sadly the sun wasn’t hot enough, which is crazy because it is summer in Florida right now).  Use your heating tool and warm up the fabric by passing your heating tool over it a couple times.  Now warm up your wax, until it is glistening on top.  Once your wax is shiny, rub it on the fabric.  Here are a few waxing tips for you:

  • Try your best to apply an even coat.
  • Work in small areas of your fabric.
  • This tip I found at Radiant Home Studio, but when you are applying the wax, one direction will cause the fabric to wrinkle.  Apply the wax in the direction that is easiest.

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Once you have your fabric waxed, run the heat gun (or blow dryer) over it again to let the wax soak into the fabric.  This step is fun, because the wax literally seeps into the fabric.  You can go back over your fabric a second (or third) time if you would like.  I found that I had a hard time getting a very even coat, and tried fixing my unevenness with my second and third coat.  My fabric ended up a bit splotchy, but I love the worn look it gives the fabric.

Wax Fabric Tutorial :: Dandelion Drift

Sewing with waxed fabric, I did most of my sewing before waxing the bag.  I didn’t want to gunk up my sewing machine.  That’s it!  Enjoy your water resistant fabric!

Caravan Tote :: Dandelion Drift

Caravan Tote

Caravan Tote :: Dandelion Drift

Woo hoo! It’s round three of the Super Online Sewing Match, and I’m pinching myself that I’m in this competition!  These ladies are all amazingly talented, good sewers, with a good eye for fabric and pattern combinations!

Caravan Tote :: Dandelion Drift

This round had us sewing the caravan tote, a pattern by Anna from Noodlehead.  I am not a stranger to bag making, in fact, I sew quite a few bags.  I love the attention to details that bags require!

Caravan Tote :: Dandelion Drift Caravan Tote :: Dandelion Drift

I actually already owned this pattern, had it all cut out, and then did nothing with it.  That pile of cut out fabric is still waiting for me to sew, but I somehow felt it might be cheating to sew the pattern that I had already cut and set aside. So I looked through my fabric, and had a pair of pants I had sewn sitting in my re purpose pile.  They were pants I just never reached for, but were sewn out of great fabric, Robert Kaufman Essex Linen, so I knew I could re use the material!

Caravan Tote :: Dandelion Drift

The bottom of my bag is the linen, and the top of my bag is a cut up canvas drop cloth (leftover from a curtain project for my son’s room).  I wanted to make my tote waterproof, so I looked into how to wax the fabric.  I combined paraffin and beeswax to make my own wax, and set to work.  I’ll do a whole other post about waxing the fabric, but it was a lot of work, but also a lot of fun!

Caravan Tote :: Dandelion Drift Caravan Tote :: Dandelion Drift Caravan Tote :: Dandelion Drift

The inside of the tote is lined with Kona Cotton coral fabric, with the linen for the pocket.  I love how Anna has a clip inside her poolside tote pattern, so I added that detail to this tote.  The zipper pocket is lined with a vintage fabric from the thrift store, and the needle pocket was made with coral fabric.  I wish I could say I would load this tote up with my knitting needles, but I just haven’t found my grove with knitting.  My friend who owns a yarn shop says I need to change and try a different project (I’ve only ever started one knitting project).  Who knows, maybe I’ll one day fall in love with knitting!  But for now, these pockets will be filled with pens.

Caravan Tote :: Dandelion DriftCaravan Tote :: Dandelion Drift Caravan Tote :: Dandelion Drift

The pouch that comes along with the caravan tote pattern is such a cute pouch, the perfect size to slip my phone and wallet into when I’m running into the store.  I added a little wrist strap to my pouch, and again lined this one with the vintage thrift store fabric.

Caravan Tote :: Dandelion Drift

Oh man, I almost forgot to tell you about the straps.  They are from one of Josh’s old belts.  I cut it in half length wise, measured them to size and added the straps with rivets.  I also omitted the magnetic snap and instead used the rest of the belt to make a leather closure, which really holds the bag closed (I was worried it would slip open, but nope)!  The leather is thick for these straps, which had me worried if my rivet posts would be long enough, but it all worked perfectly!  I love the rustic feel the old, used leather adds to the tote!

Caravan Tote :: Dandelion Drift Caravan Tote :: Dandelion Drift

That was a lot of information.  Let me give you a quick rundown of all the info and where I purchased the specialty hardware:

Pattern: Caravan Tote

Exterior Fabric:  Robert Kaufman Essex Linen, Canvas Drop Cloth

Lining:  Kona Cottong Coral, Vintage Thrifted Fabric

Leather:  Re purposed belt

Rivets:  Bag For U (on etsy)

Hook:  Creative Cloth Studio (on etsy)

Zippers:  Zip It (on etsy)

Snaps:  Dritz from Jo Ann

Caravan Tote :: Dandelion Drift

Marianne Dress

Marianne Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Hey there!  I advanced on to round two of the Super Online Sewing Match, which had me sewing the Marianne Dress by Christine Haynes.  I was so happy to get this pattern, this one has been on my radar for a while now!  In fact, when some local friends saw what the second challenge was for the match, they told me right away how the Marianne dress is my style!

Marianne Dress :: Dandelion Drift

I love the cover photos Christine did of the dress, and pretty much just copied her!  I knew I wanted a striped dress, so I called Harts fabric to make sure they had enough yardage of the fabric I wanted.  They were great and shipped it out right away.  The solid white fabric is Robert Kaufman laguna jersey that I grabbed from the Imagine Gnats shop.  And the buttons were from my stash.

Marianne Dress :: Dandelion Drift

I sewed a quick muslin of the Marianne dress to check the fit and size 6 was perfect.  (My measurements are 34-27-37 if that helps you judge size.)

Marianne Dress :: Dandelion Drift

One of the great things about sewing patterns is that they are like little mini sewing lessons.  You learn new techniques which can carry over into other patterns.  With the Marianne dress, I had never used clear elastic before.  It is perfect!  There is no pulling on my shoulder seams, leaving my dress looking pretty professional!

Marianne Dress :: Dandelion Drift

I grabbed a few techniques from other patterns to apply to this pattern.  I finished the neckline differently than Christine instructs.  The greenwood tank pattern (by Straight Stitch Designs) has you finish the neck leaving the binding pretty narrow.  I love the feminine look of this finishing technique and have been pretty much applying it to all of my knit tops!

Marianne Dress :: Dandelion Drift

I’m sure you’ve noticed, but I also added pockets to this pattern.  I love a dress with pockets, but knew that side pockets on a knit dress are not the best.  I have added side seam pockets to a lady skater dress before, and the pockets constantly bunch up and add bulk at my hips.  The pockets I used are from the Cabin pattern (by Blueprints for Sewing).  I love these pockets and thought they would look great with the Marianne dress.  They are called weltless pockets, and are pretty easy to sew up!  (I do have to confess, though, that I was crazy nervous cutting out my weltless pockets when I had to slice into my dress.  But it all worked out great!)

Marianne Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Here’s a quick peak at the inside.  I sewed it all on my serger, except the hem and the neck line, which were done on my regular sewing machine.  (Christine’s instructions are great and walk you through how to use either machine to sew your dress.)

Marianne Dress :: Dandelion Drift Marianne Dress :: Dandelion Drift Marianne Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Oooh, last thing.  The stripes.  I was meticulous about matching these stripes, so I pinned, and pinned, and pinned some more.  I tried pinning two different ways and thought I’d share what I learned.  The first side I sewed, I pinned each and every single stripe, with my pins perpendicular to the seam (that was a lot of pins)!  The second side, I pinned with my pins parallel to the seam, with the tip of my pin going into one stripe, and out the second stripe.  Both sides worked great, neither one yielding a different result than the other.  From now on, I’ll be pinning the parallel way, using half as many pins as the other side!

Marianne Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Lace Sutton Blouse

Lace Sutton Blouse :: Dandelion Drift

Did you know I was chosen as a contestant for the Super Online Sewing Match over at Sew Mama Sew?  I’ve been a little quiet about it, probably because I’m a little bit nervous (okay, a lot nervous) but I’m also super excited to compete and sew along!

Lace Sutton Blouse :: Dandelion Drift

Our first challenge was to sew the Sutton Blouse (pattern by Kelli over at True Bias). At first that calmed my nerves a bit since I’ve sewn this pattern before and then I started second guessing all of my decisions when I was fabric shopping. Should I choose fabric that can show off my stripe matching skills, or maybe pattern matching skills. And then Josh eventually chimed in with good advice (his advice usually is pretty good) and said “Teresa, you were chosen to compete, so stay true to your style. Sew what you would normally sew and if you are chosen to move on in the competition, then great! If not, you’ve sewn some things that you’ll wear and love.”  Good advice, huh?

Lace Sutton Blouse :: Dandelion Drift

So here’s my new top, sewn in black rayon challis from the imagine gnats shop. I used the same rayon for my last Sutton (just a different color). Ooh, I should mention, my last Sutton gets worn about once a week, so I knew this fabric would be great for another Sutton. Perfect drape, perfect weight, and it holds up to lots of washes!

Lace Sutton Blouse :: Dandelion Drift Lace Sutton Blouse :: Dandelion Drift

I love the contrast fabric options with the yoke, so i cut my yoke piece out of cotton / nylon / rayon lace fabric from Jo Ann (I liked that the lace wasn’t too flowery and it had great drape). This lace, rayon combo is nothing new. Caroline (from Blackbird Caroline Fabric) has sewn a similar Sutton and I love the look of her top!

Lace Sutton Blouse :: Dandelion Drift Lace Sutton Blouse :: Dandelion Drift

My last Sutton I sewed in a size 4, where my measurements put me, and the fit is great! This time, though, I sized down the pattern and sewed a size 2. I knew there was enough ease in the pattern that it would still fit great, just a slimmer silhouette. The only other pattern change I made was when I finished the sleeves. I didn’t want to just fold my lace fabric over, so instead I cut two more one inch wide bias strips from my rayon and finished the sleeves just like the neck.

Lace Sutton Blouse :: Dandelion Drift I ironed the shirt, I promise.  Rayon Challis just wrinkles easily, and the light caught my wrinkles just right, agh!

I love how Kelli’s pattern instructions walk you through a beautiful finish inside and out. All of the seams (except the sides) are french seamed. And the sides of my blouse are surged and then turned under and stitched, leaving a clean finish! These pictures below give you a little peek at the insides…

Lace Sutton Blouse :: Dandelion Drift Lace Sutton Blouse :: Dandelion Drift Lace Sutton Blouse :: Dandelion Drift

Phew, round one of the Super Online Sewing Match is done…I’ve never sewn something so meticulously, making sure each seam was perfect! And even better, I love my new top!

Lace Sutton Blouse :: Dandelion Drift

Striped Dress Tutorial

I know I’m not much of a pattern girl (patterns printed on fabric) when I’m sewing for myself, but stripes, they are a different story.  They send my heart aflutter.  I love their clean lines and simplicity.

Striped Dress Tutorial :: Dandelion Drift

Striped Dress Tutorial :: Dandelion Drift

I have a super simple summer dress tutorial for you, sewn out of the softest rayon knit fabric, in none other than stripes.  In fact, Melissa has been rounding up summer dress tutorials all month long, leaving you with 30 + dresses to inspire you to pull out your sewing machine and make something great this summer!

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Ready for the easy instructions!  Here we go:

Striped Dress Tutorial :: Dandelion Drift

1.  Grab your favorite tank top and trace around it on your fabric, adding 3/8 inch for seam allowance.  Add length to make it a dress, and about 1 inch at your hips to give your hips some room!  Do the same for the back.

*Stripe tip: to help match your stripes, place your tank top underarm at the same stripe for the front and back.

2.  With right sides together, sew the front and back side seams.  Sew the shoulder seams as well.  Use either your serger or a knit stitch on your sewing machine.

*Stripe tip: to help match your stripes while sewing, pin, pin, and pin some more!  Without pins, your fabric wants to move a little, and nothing is worse than stripes that are just barely off!

3.  Finish off your neck and armhole openings.  I used a knit binding method following this tutorial here!

Striped Dress Tutorial :: Dandelion Drift

That’s it.  I left my dress hem unfinished, knowing I liked the casual look, but you could easily fold up the bottom hem one inch and stitch in place.

Striped Dress Tutorial :: Dandelion Drift

P.S.  Melissa has a great giveaway here full of goodies!

Megan Nielsen Veronika Skirt

Megan Nielsen Veronika Skirt :: Dandelion Drift

I don’t know what the weather is like around you all, but it is HOT here!  Seriously HOT!  Like five minutes outside and I feel like I am melting!  This summer, I’ve been living in anything loose fitting to help beat the heat, and that means skirts and dresses!  I love shorts and t shirts, but man, even a t shirt is sweltering in this Florida heat!

Megan Nielsen Veronika Skirt :: Dandelion Drift

My loose, comfy dress department is lacking, so I’m thinking this summer I might need to make a few more southport dresses.  And Closet Case Files just released a pattern for a new maxi dress / jumpsuit!  Definitely on my to sew list!

Megan Nielsen Veronika Skirt :: Dandelion Drift

But for now I’ve been living in skirts!  Megan Nielsen has a great new free pattern for a circle skirt, with loads of options, the Veronika Skirt.  Since I love a quick sew every now and then, I sewed up the skirt in knit fabric with an elastic waistband.  Super comfy, super simple, and looks like I tried when I got dressed in the morning!  My kind of getting dressed!

Megan Nielsen Veronika Skirt :: Dandelion Drift

This is sewn in Robert Kaufman laguna jersey, in emerald.  I know I’ve said this a million times before, but I live in a small town with not a lot of fabric buying options.  That leaves the internet to rescue me, and Robert Kaufman’s jersey is a safe buy!  I know it is good quality and will last after many, many washes.

Megan Nielsen Veronika Skirt :: Dandelion Drift

Have you added anything new to your summer sewing list?

The London Backpack

The London Calling Backpack :: Dandelion Drift

It’s not often I sew something for Sweet Pea just because.  No reason, but just because.  This bag was not something she needed, nor something she asked for, but I knew this pattern / fabric combination would be perfect for my girl (who sadly is not so very little anymore)!

The London Calling Backpack :: Dandelion Drift The London Calling Backpack :: Dandelion Drift

Let me talk first about the fabric.  This is Caroline’s newest fabric line, Happy Home Fabrics for Art Gallery Fabrics.  I love the outside fabric with it’s little handwritten words.  My favorite word on the fabric is “chosen” but I knew I wanted to highlight the word “sweet” for my girl, because that just sums up her personality!  I did a little hand stitching in green around the word “sweet” on the front flap just to add a small detail.  The inside fabric is also from the Happy Home Fabric collection (which I love that it coordinates without being matchy matchy)!

The London Calling Backpack :: Dandelion Drift The London Calling Backpack :: Dandelion Drift

Okay, the pattern.  This is the London Backpack pattern by Vanessa of LBG studios.  You can find it for sale here (over at Willow and Co.) and the moment I saw it I bought it knowing it would be perfect for Sweet Pea.  She’s at that stage where sleep overs are her favorite thing.  In fact I asked her what was on her summer wish list and all she could think about was sleep overs with her friends.  This backpack is the perfect little overnight bag to tuck away a change of clothes and the little necessities a 10 year old (ahh…almost 11 year old) would need!

The London Calling Backpack :: Dandelion Drift The London Calling Backpack :: Dandelion Drift

I know I talk a lot about details, but man that is what makes my knees shake when I see a pattern (okay, really my knees aren’t shaking, it’s my purchase finger that is shaking, ha!).  This bag is not a quick sew, and that is something I love.  Vanessa has jam packed this pattern with details, from an interior hanging zipper pocket, a large exterior pocket in the back, grommets for the tie closure, ahhh, I love it all!

The London Calling Backpack :: Dandelion Drift The London Calling Backpack :: Dandelion Drift

I had a hard time finding the right hardware for the bag.  Sometimes living in a small town can be rough.  Small town = small fabric stores = not a big selection!  I could have ordered hardware online, but I just went with what I had.  I stole the metal strap holders from a purse that was in the donate pile.  And I didn’t have any strap sliders, so I had Sweet Pea try the bag on and I stitched the straps where she wanted them placed.  And the drawstring is just  a shoelace (it was the perfect length)!

The London Calling Backpack :: Dandelion Drift

Well I hope you are having a happy beginning to your summer!  Sweet Pea is now ready with her bag to pack a few things up and have fun with her friends!  No really, as soon as I was done sewing the bag, she asked if she could pack it up and head over to a friend’s house!  Happy summer, I hope it is sweet!

The London Calling Backpack :: Dandelion Drift

Art Gallery Fabrics provided me with the Happy Home Fabrics (thanks AGF).  Of course, my opinions here are honest and always truthful!